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Tasting Reviews

Sileni Estates ‘Cellar Selection’ 2018 Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir

Sileni Estates is one of the larger producers based in Hawke’s Bay, but the majority of the output is in Marlborough sourced wine. This reflects the degree that exports make in the sales; every significant New Zealand winegrower of size must have a Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc in its portfolio. This is a shame in some ways, as it disguises the passion for Hawke’s Bay wine that resulted in the set-up of the company in 1998, and still exists today. The most popular range that Sileni makes is the ‘Cellar Selection’ tier, and these are good varietal and regional expressions that offer accessibility and value. Here, I review the new 2018 Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, Hawke’s Bay Pinot Gris and Hawke’s Bay Pinot Noir.

Sileni Estates ‘Cellar Selection’ Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2018
Bright, light straw-yellow colour with slight green hues, a little lighter on the rim. The nose is fresh and softly full with an amalgam of passionfruit and gooseberries, along with fresh herbs, some nettle notes and chalky minerals. Dry to taste and medium-bodied, the palate is restrained in expression with a soft core of passionfruit and gooseberries, along with soft nettle and cut-grass flavours, and fresh herbs. The flavours are up-front and enlivened by fresh acidity, and the wine carries along a soft-textured line leading to a lively, but slender finish. This is a fresh and lively Sauvignon Blanc with restrained flavours of passionfruit and gooseberries with herb elements on afresh palate with soft textures and a light finish. Serve as an aperitif, with salads and vegetables and Pacific Rim fare over the next 2 years. Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc fruit fermented in stainless-steel to 12.5% alc. and 4 g/L RS, with a small portion of Semillon blended into the wine. 16.5+/20 Aug 20108 RRP $19.99

Sileni Estates ‘Cellar Selection’ Hawke’s Bay Pinot Gris 2018
Bright, very pale straw colour with a suggestion of blush, lighter on the rim. The nose is tight and firm with some depth and presence of white stonefruits along with subtle notes of nutty lees elements, unfolding savoury stonefruit kernel and floral detail. Dry to taste and light-medium bodied, the palate has an elegant core of white stonefruits with a subtle amalgam of nutty lees and delicate floral nuances. The flavours are up-front and flow with gentle linearity along with soft acidity to a dry, slender finish. This is a clean and fresh, up-front dry Pinot Gris with white stonefruit flavours and some nutty and floral hints and a slender finish. Serve as an aperitif and with antipasto over the next 2 years. Hawke’s Bay fruit fermented in stainless-steel to 12.0% alc. and 6.5 g/L RS, the wine given lees contact post ferment. 16.5/20 Aug 2018 RRP $19.99

Sileni Estates ‘Cellar Selection’ Hawke’s Bay Pinot Noir 2018
Ruby-red colour with a little depth, lighter on the edge. The nose is youthfully fresh with soft but bright aromas of strawberries, cherries and raspberries, unfolding red floral elements. This is fruit-focused, up-front and uncomplicated. Light-medium bodied, the palate has light, but clear and pure fruit flavours of strawberries, cherries and raspberries. The flavours are straightforward and form an elegantly packed core with good linearity. The fruit is supported by light, supple, grainy tannin structure and grip with fine acid freshness. The wine carries to a light, juicy finish. This is an uncomplicated Pinot Noir with light, clean, pure and juicy flavours of strawberries, cherries and raspberries on a supple palate. Serve with antipasto and tapas, pasta and poultry over the next 2+ years. Hawke’s Bay fruit fermented to 12.5% alc., the wine given a small amount of oak contact. 16.5+/20 Aug 2018 RRP $19.99
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